Quick, clean, and to the point

Split dimensions into two parts

Excel formula: Split dimensions into two parts

To split dimensions like "100x50" into two separate parts, you can use formulas based on several functions: LEFT, MID, RIGHT, FIND, LEN, and SUBSTITUTE.

Note: you can also use Flash Fill in Excel 2013 and above, and the "Text to columns" feature in earlier versions of Excel. Both approaches are  simpler than the formulas described below. However, for a formula-based solution, read on.



A common annoyance with data is that it may be represented as text instead of numbers. This is especially common with dimensions, which may appear in one text string that includes units, for example:

50 ft x 200 ft
153 ft x 324 ft

In a spreadsheet, it's a lot more convenient to have actual numbers so that you can use them in calculations as you wish.

Extracting individual dimensions from a text representation can be done with formulas that combine several text functions.


In this case, it because we have both the "ft" unit and space characters (" ") included in the dimensions, it makes sense to remove these first. That will "normalize" the dimensions and simplify the formulas that do the actual extraction.

To remove both "ft" and " ", we are using this formula in cell C6, which contains two nested SUBSTITUTE functions:

=SUBSTITUTE(SUBSTITUTE(B5,"ft","")," ","")

Using the SUBSTITUTE function to strip units and spaces

This formula takes the original text, and first strips "ft" (in the inner ), then strips spaces with the outer SUBSTITUTE function.

The result is a dimension with just the "x" separating the two parts.

Now we can two relatively straightforward formulas to extract each part. To get the dimension on the left, D6 contains:


Using the LEFT function to grab the dimension on the left

To get the dimension on the right, E6 contains:


Using the RIGHT function to grab the dimension on the right

Both of the formulas above extract the correct dimension by using FIND to locate the "x". For more detail, see the related function links on this page.

Dave Bruns

Excel Formula Training

Formulas are the key to getting things done in Excel. In this accelerated training, you'll learn how to use formulas to manipulate text, work with dates and times, lookup values with VLOOKUP and INDEX & MATCH, count and sum with criteria, dynamically rank values, and create dynamic ranges. You'll also learn how to troubleshoot, trace errors, and fix problems. Instant access. See details here.

Download 100+ Important Excel Functions

Get over 100 Excel Functions you should know in one handy PDF.

Excel foundational video course
Excel Pivot Table video training course
Excel formulas and functions video training course
Excel Charts video training course
Video training for Excel Tables
Dynamic Array Formulas